north county san diego, homegrown saison tasting, racking vizcaino

last weekend AP and I headed down to north county san diego to hang out with CB and family.

  • we got in late saturday night but still managed to grab some brews over at pizza port carlsbad.  pizza port’s relaxed atmosphere and world class beers are a great representation of what the SD beer scene has to offer, and a cold pour of plant to pint along with a slice or three are worth the trip alone.
  • the next morning we headed inland over to escondido to meet up with CB at stone brewing.  the food was great, the staff was awesome, and the beers were outstanding.  I especially enjoyed the variety of low-alcohol session offerings, including a stout from craftsman that clocked in under 4% abv and was perfect for a hot indian summer afternoon.  stone’s spacious “beer garden”  was a great place to stretch out and let the kids run wild.
  • one note: I was disappointed to discover that pizza port’s badass bottle shop has been sidelined by local government and can currently only sell bottles for on-site consumption.  for the sake of local business, I hope they can overcome this legislative BS, but in the meantime, texas wine and liquor will have to fit the bill for picking up some bottles for the ride north.

after recovering from a busy weekend, I rallied my strength mid-week and headed to the basement to rack the latest batch of vizcaino onto some fruit.

  •  I chose raspberries to complement the light color and funk-forward flavor and aroma of the beer, and racked the developing brew onto over nine pounds of seedless puree and one ounce of toasted french oak.  after close to six months in the fermentor, the gravity had dropped from 20 brix to 10.25 brix, for a current abv of 9.09%. hopefully the bugs have enough energy left to chew through the fruit!

while vizcaino was changing homes I also got a chance to taste a chilled bottle of my homegrown saison:

  • appearance: golden orange with a slight haze, vigorous fine carbonation (after only a week!) that results in a fluffy white head
  • aroma: assertive spice and aromatic floral notes, slight citrus finish
  • taste: assertive spice, pepper, and belgian esters, fruit with a touch of alcohol at the finish
  • overall: I’m excited at the condition of this beer so early in the game.  I’m glad I sacked it up and fermented at close to 90F – this yeast can handle it and rewards you with some great assertive classic saison flavors.  my favorite saison yeast yet!  although I decided against a brett b secondary here I definitely plan on doing one in the future, especially after reading this writeup over at embrace the funk.



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